BRAKES (not breaks)!!!
According to the news clip from Colorado, that seems to be the case. If you need it, use it, that’s what it’s there for. But getting towed out of it is on your dime. I would have loved to see how they pulled that rig out from that gravel trap, it was a long, steep-looking run!
Well, one would hope so. However, that costs money, and some trucking companies want to save a buck by skimping on maintenance.
And as others have noted, if you are hauling 30 odd tons of refrigerators, that’s a LOT of mass that has to be stopped. Failed brakes on a 6% downhill grade is NOT. FUN.
I would think a fee would be for the recovery vehicle to pull you out of one, and the fines would be for possibly failure to maintain the vehicle, or other infractions that resulted in you needing to hit the ramp to begin with. There’s also the need to ‘reset’ the ramp too, which might be charged back to the truck’s owner as well. I’d have to look that specific up.
The emergency brakes on a truck use air pressure to release the brakes. (Their default state is spring-loaded full braking) So in normal/good circumstances, if the air breaks fail, all you can do is stop. In normal/bad circumstances, the brakes get hot, burn up, and then the pressure system doesn’t really matter any more.
edit: I see this was mostly covered already - carry on
Um, NO. The local police in Vancouver, Burnaby et al, and the BC Dept. of Transport run vehicle stop checks all the time and fail an amazingly large number of companies/drivers for seriously unsafe dump trucks, semi-trailers and large vans. The most dangerous ones are towed and impounded.
Would be better without the dramatic music, and with long, low farting noises when the trucks plow into the sand.
LAKES (not leaks)!!!
(Sorry, couldn’t resist! )
A lake? That is mere punning.
There are clearly many possible reasons for runaway trucks. On the steep pass near my place, the most common root cause is overloaded trucks for the conditions. There’s a lowered weight limit on the pass which is frequently violated. Brakes become overheated and ineffectual even before they wear out. Drivers can only down shift so far without blowing up their engine or burning up their clutch. If that happens, there’s no engine braking either.
The fact that the one ramp in the vid has a gantry crane available for extraction indicates a frequent need. That’s troubling. Here they are winched out with a heavy tow truck.
QFT. I knew an independent trucker who was looking for a gig with a trucking company. Almost universally they were terrible on required maintenance, and ran trucks to the point of breaking down (definitely with some dangerous failure points and outright illegalities). It’s another system with very thin profit margins which should be overhauled.
Them’s the brakes.
Forthcoming electric trucks will help mitigate this problem. Regenerative braking saves a lot of wear and heating of friction brakes, reducing the frequency of failure. But if the trailer brakes are out, there’s still a risk of jack-knifing trying to slow a large load on steep grades. Still gonna need these ramps.
Some of the footage was made in Paraná, Brazil.
One of my Dad’s friends was a mechanic, driving a broken down truck back to his shop late at night. Load of pipe, brake fail, sharp turn, instant death
It’s a nasty load, I think. Even if it’s strapped down (almost) well, the inner pipes could still shift. Well, better a gravel bed than the back of another vehicle.
I love how in this footage it looks like overseas they have the entire thing thought including ‘shoulders’ and a large crane setup to lift the trucks out and back onto solid ground. Here in the states our ‘runaway ramps’ feel like a total afterthought in comparison.
The other bonus with electric trucks is that, if you mount one motor-generator per wheelset, that can allow precise millisecond-level control of both motor power and regen braking at each wheelset.
Jack-knifing can then be prevented in software.
Or so they tell me.
I’m looking forward to the demos – they should also be '“pleasantly unsatisfying.”